The Head of the CIA unit that watches Russia, Peter Klement, stated that the President of the Russian Federation, Vladimir Putin, is concerned that instability and unrest will prevail in Russia, the Voice of America reported. Klement believes that Putin is likely to present his candidacy for elections in 2018 and will initiate a more severe style of governance because of that concern.
Klement made particular mention of reports regarding the possible major reorganization of the Russian Special Services, when the agencies of domestic and foreign intelligence are united into one single organization dominated by the Federal Security Bureau (FSB). “I see potential tightening of control over society in this,” he said, noting that Russia is mired in an oil mono-economy. Commenting on the reports regarding the intention of the Russian Government to raise the retirement age in the country, Klement stated that Russia is beginning to save money on everything.
Putin notably focused on the cessation of post-Soviet chaos and reintegration of Russia into the system of international order during his first term of office in 2000. “Now, things have gone back to the way they were. Now, I see much more of the Committee for State Security (KGB) in him than we ever knew. Vladimir Putin wants to leave behind a legacy of strong leadership that would include the occupation of the Crimea in March 2014,” Klement added.
“I think that now the Russian President believes that he has done something that will ensure him a place in Russian history. Putin also wants to be a man who restored the former glory of Russia and undoubtedly believes that Russia should be strong, competitive and a military state.”
Klement also added that interference of the Russian President in the civil war in Syria made the United States come to the negotiating table and recognize Vladimir Putin as an equal member.